The doctor who is planning on delivering you in 10 weeks drives me crazy. She is very passive and quiet and talks to me like I am a high school student. Amazingly, in this world of incredibly overweight individuals, she has discouraged me from exercising.
Exercising at this stage of pregnancy is not fun. I have to tear apart my drawers trying to find a shirt that will fit over my protruding belly (usually one of your dad’s) and head to gym where people just cannot help but stare. You and I climb on the elliptical machine and turn the tv to the Food Network so I can salivate over food I will never be savvy enough to make and we begin our steady motion. Usually, once or twice, you twist yourself into a torpedo position and it feels like your tiny toes are going to blast right through my poor belly button. But we trudge along because it will be better for both of us if I manage to avoid orca status during these last few weeks. People walk into the exercise room and do a double take- trying to figure out why that short, fat girl has such skinny legs. We keep our steady motion until you eventually relax back into a ball and I can breathe.
Your dad calls the doctor “the oat” because she seems a bit hippyish to us, like she goes home and dances around in her clogs with flowers in her hair, but she is probably the first person you will see. Your birth is impending. Of course the task of it makes me nervous and the pain as I am trying to avoid drugging both of us up, but mostly I wonder what it will be like when you are actually here. Right now my layers of flubber do such a great job of keeping you safe. When you arrive, there will be no bubble for you to snuggle in and it will be up to me and your dad to make sure you survive. That sounds harsh, like we will be raising you in the African bush but at its most basic element, that is our job. I think about you as an infant, so small and vulnerable and then you as the rough and tumble 5 year old I know you will become, the 16 year old heading off for the first time alone in a car and the 18 year old released into the world. I know that what I have done with having you is putting myself in a constant state of worry and fear, that I will ultimately fail at parenthood. Coupled with that, I know that you will bring so much joy to my life. So even though I will undoubtedly be ready to never speak to “the oat” again, I will look at in her awe after she places your little body in my arms and I meet you for the first time.